“Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star”


"Twinkle, twinkle little star." The singer wonders what the star is. It shows its light while the sun is down. It "lights the traveller in the dark" so he can see which way to go.


According to Fuld, the tune of this first appeared in 1761 as "Ah! Vous Dirai-Je, Maman." The tune had sundry English lyrics before being united with the Taylor words apparently in 1838.

The popularity of the piece shows in the various parodies, notably Carroll's "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Bat." - RBW

Cross references


  1. Opie-Oxford2 489, "Twinkle, twinkle, little star" (1 text)
  2. Baring-Gould-MotherGoose #168, pp. 125-126, "(Twinkle, twinkle, little star)"
  3. MHenry-Appalachians, p. 243, (no title) (1 fragment)
  4. Fuld-WFM, pp. 593-594, "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star -- (ABCDEFG; Baa, Baa, Black Sheep; Schnitzelbank)"
  5. BI, OO2489


Author: Jane Taylor (1783-1824)
Earliest date: 1806 (Rhymes for the Nursery, according to Opie-Oxford2)
Keywords: lyric nonballad
Found in: US